[Marxism] Frank Baum on Native Americans - from Wikipedia

DCQ davecq at yahoo.com
Sat Apr 13 20:41:05 MDT 2013

Oh for fuck's sake. Conspiracy theory as literary criticism. This thing makes "The DaVinci Code" look credible.

Anyone who has studied Baum recently knows about his notorious anti-Indian editorials (his position seems to have evolved from a romantic ("orientalist"?) idealization to genocidal contempt). They should be more widely known. But to say The Wizard of Oz is a secret decoder ring for Indian genocide is at least as silly as (far more silly, in fact, than) saying it is an allegory of populist revolution. The fact that people claim both should tell you something.


On Apr 13, 2013, at 9:17 PM, Louis Proyect wrote:

> June 26 / 27, 2004
> L. Frank Baum: Racist
> Indian-Hating in "The Wizard of Oz"
> Lyman Frank Baum (1856-1919) advocated the extermination of the American
> Indian in his 1899 fantasy "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz". Baum was an
> Irish nationalist newspaper editor, a former resident of Aberdeen in the
> old Dakota Indian territory. His sympathies with the village pioneers
> caused him to invent the Oz fantasy to justify extermination. All of
> Baum's "innocent" symbols clearly represent easily recognizable frontier
> landmarks, political realities, and peoples. These symbols were
> presented to frontier children, to prepare them for their racially
> violent future.
> The Yellow Brick Road represents the yellow brick gold at the end of the
> Bozeman Road to the Montana gold fields. Chief Red Cloud had forced the
> razing of several posts, including Fort Phil Kearney, and had forced the
> signing of the Fort Laramie Treaty. When George Armstrong Custer cut
> "the Thieves' Road" during his 1874 gold expedition invasion of the
> sacred Black Hills, he violated this treaty, and turned U.S. foreign
> policy toward the Little Big Horn and the Wounded Knee massacre.

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